The Sentinels


I give up trying to understand it. Trying to understand why I am attracted to certain things. Why certain things make their appearance in my photo archive, on their secret mission to make me sit up and take notice.

Now it’s lampposts. Urban sentinels, standing tall, guarding the night.

It all started with my Contemplative Photography  “Color” assignment. During that project, I captured a blue lamppost. Since then, I see them everywhere – in all their variety and utilitarian beauty. And so, I take their portraits. Trying to find ways to make each unique; to discover different routes for them to enter and exit the frame.

I’ve stopped trying to second-guess it. To judge whether this attraction is weird or not.

Instead, I just shoot. And see what happens.

And that’s the thing. Knowing there is always something else out there, always more, waiting to be discovered. There is an infinite array of color and line and shape and light, in limitless combinations.

Today it’s lampposts. Tomorrow, who knows?

And isn’t that exciting?






Posted on June 28, 2012, in Photography and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 17 Comments.

  1. I’m so enjoying the assignments in this book and so understand about the connection to lampposts! Love the composition of the last capture! Nice!

  2. Hey Brenda-I commented earlier w/out remembering to leave my contact info. I think my brain is just on overload.
    Lampposts? Who would have thought, but why not? I like that first image-it speaks “Brenda” with the colorful geometric roofline supporting the posts. I also like that last shot with the abstract feeling marshmallow clouds.
    I wanted to thank you for that info about the Scott Kelby interview. A little preview to my adventure. I’ve been really overwhelmed getting organized in such a brief amount of time, but it’s coming together. Leaving waaayyyyyy early on Sunday morn. Looking forward to getting back with many images to play with . Happy day to you my friend.

    • Susan – “overload brain” is certainly to be expected, with all that you have on your plate. Please have the BEST time on your trip – the rest of us will travel vicariously with you via your images. I so look forward to the “Susan” view of Cuba. Bon Voyage!

  3. I love the one with the moon in the background. And I adore what you write here about always finding newness in the world. I recently read an interview between two stunning poets and one of them cited this Muslim prayer, “Lord, increase my bewilderment”. Here’s the link to the whole interview — but what an amazing way to approach the world, with a craving for bewilderment.

    • Lisa – thank you for sharing the interview link – what stunning poetry work. I am in awe of you and other wordsmiths who can stitch words together and create magic. And yes, I would like to approach each day seeking bewidlerment.

  4. Who thought lampposts could be so interesting? — you did! I love the colors and composition in your first shot. The old fashioned lamppost with the moon above it has to be my favorite. My current fascination is with bricks!

  5. I love how you notice something, photograph it, then start noticing it more and more and photographing it more and more. Wonderful. Fun. Inspirational. Freeing. You show us the beauty in the ordinary.

  6. I love how you find beautify in the most ordinary of objects. The last photo with the clouds and light is extraordinary.

  7. Splendid series–fantastic compositions and gorgeous colors in each of these minimalist studies. Awesome Brenda!

  8. Fabulous shots – I love how you describe them as ‘portraits’. Love the last one especially with the glow and clouds blending together. It’s fascinating how one shot leads to another – the more you notice, the more there is to notice. Beautifully done.

  9. The one that caught my eye (pun not intended) was the second one, that looks so much like an eyeball. I should have known you’d seen that too – I just noticed you called it Eye in the Sky! 🙂 Someone could write a story about that one. Science fiction, I think….

  10. Your lamp posts are beautiful! They all look so great against the sky, I particularly like the cloudy sky.

  11. Wonderful images, Brenda. The first week of my workshop we talked about the power of intention. So when we are looking for color or texture or patterns we suddenly see them everywhere. Something about lamp posts stuck with you.

  12. Brenda, you do have an amazing eye–first, for noticing some of your more unusual topics and second, your unique combination of vision, patience, and artistry to create such stunning images. BTW, I loved the last one of the sunkissed lamp.

  13. You’ve found another wonderful series!! I love it! I can just see you finding your lamp post circling around it, observing through your view finder and capturing the perfect image!! My favorites are the moon and the sun, but I love them all!

  14. It’s incredibly exciting to not know what’s next or the why of it. As much as I am in love with your lamp post images, I am even more comforted by your message. Sometimes we have to trust and follow, instead of question and judge. Not that questioning isn’t good. I don’t mean that. Just that sometimes my internal filter of judgement cuts short the creative process of following the lead of the eye, and the discovery of unexpected pattern or joy or understanding or all of it that comes later. Thanks for being a sentinel..on the look out – and for not being afraid to follow thru…

  15. FANTASTIC!! Especially love that first image. And – sometimes better not to second guess..and just go with the ‘feeling’.

I greatly appreciate your comments!

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